General Chat, Products & Comps <
05/01/2011 at 15:40
I'm looking for your tips and stories about getting out and about with a new baby. How do you/did you manage using public transport with a new baby? Did you find most people were helpful with your buggy?
What about eating out with a baby, what's your top tip for a stress-free lunch with a newborn?
How about mastering the shops with a little one? Are you a fan of a sling so your hands are free for going wild in the aisles?
Please share your tips for travelling and socialising with a new baby for Practical Parenting magazine by either posting on here or emailing me on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liz, PP X
05/01/2011 at 21:30
Hi,my advice is go prepared for evry eventuality! I take more nappies than I predict to use,more spare clothes,more bibs etc.....I must look like I'm leaving home each trip out! But then as the girl guides say-BE PREPARED!!!!
When eating out I always eat just before they normally eat so to avoid any grumpy little people,and order there food first,have something myself after helping the older two and bottle feeding LO then we usually eat when the boys have dessert!!! But then as Pizza hut had kids eat free......I'm sorry I headed for the buffet to avoid any stress!!!!
For clothes shopping,well I wouldn't bother with a little one,but have been to 2 supermarkets with my 3 under 5,full bellies and not too tired is best answer!
05/01/2011 at 22:42
Yes I notice the first things you suggest are two pre-baby activities - lunches and socialising !!With a very young baby its still possible to take them out of the car asleep in their car seat and sit them through your lunch. I took 10 week old twins out for a very loud Christmas lunch with my old work colleagues this way ! (I hadnt expected there would be more than just a few of us but in fact there were other groups out as well !) but they slept through it.
For socialising you will find that a whole new world opens up to you. Baby swim classes, toddlers groups. There is often a baby class arranged with your antenatal group. We continued to meet up afterwards, firstly at a library coffee shop then at people's houses. And the NCT often run Bumps and Babies meetups where you can go round to each other's houses.
At a young age its often all dictated around whether and when they've been fed. If you can get out just after they've had a feed and are due to sleep then you can maybe get some peace and quiet to yourself !And once they are older its a case of take along some toys to entertain them in your bag.
And if all else fails then the sugar bags on the table can be played with !!
05/01/2011 at 22:44
05/01/2011 at 23:39
I agree with everyone else! I plan it more than I used to plan for my holidays and probably have more stuff! If you want to go clothes shopping go with a list of what you are looking for, try it on when you get home not in the shop if you can't get someone to watch the pram and if possible do it all online and avoid the hassle! Have a bag full of small snacks, drinks and small books/toys and make sure you know where every toilet is and visit each one you pass just in case!
Lunches with tiny babies are fine as long as it is roughly just after they have been fed but once they are weaned, in my experience its easiest to accept that if you did it before the baby was born and want to carry on enjoying it then leave baby at home with a babysitter! Toddlers are less tolerated by other diners, be prepared that they will decide they need the loo as your food arrives, will knock over the salt onto the baby's food and spill every drink when they bash the table because they can't quite reach. I try to take some colouring and some books to read and a quiet time toy to keep them occupied and if possible rope in as many extra adults as I possibly can and keep the meal to a main course.
I am however a big believer in taking my children to the supermarket with me so they learn how to behave from a young age - only under 2's in the trolley or I can't push it and everyone else helps pick up the items from mummys list, if they behave well they get a small treat or magazine with their pocket money. My girls are 4 1/2yrs 3yrs and 15mths and I've only once had a major tantrum in the supermarket (turned out to be chickenpox). My tip is toilet on arrival, take a list and be prepared, there is no time for browsing and I aim to be in and out within an hour or they get fed up.
I loved my sling for around the house and walks with the dog or to the swings but with 3 girls I find it much easier with the pushchair so I can fill the basket instead of carrying everything.
Baby socialising is completely different to pre-baby with coffee mornings, playgyms and trips to the park, I still try to feed my girls a snack before we leave to play, change nappy and take to toilet and be prepared with a drink ready and expect they will eat all the biscuits and not want lunch and I will only have every conversation interupted by someone falling over and will have to wait years to finish a hot drink. If I expect the worse I'm usually pleasantly surprised it hasn't happened and don't get quite as stressed out, I occasionally even get compliments that they are well behaved children!
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